Redland City Council CEO, Bill Lyon said Council was appalled that 160 newly planted street trees on North Stradbroke have been wilfully and completely destroyed, with many sawn off at ground level.
“Council has reported the details to the police, but it simply beggars belief that anyone would go to so much trouble to destroy this investment in the Point Lookout community,” Mr Lyon said.
The native species street tree planting project in Point Lookout, was a Council supported initiative that involved the local Councillor and contributions from an island based landscape architect, Council workers and arborists.
“The project was designed to enhance the visual amenity of the roadside landscape across the Point Lookout community.
“Great care was taken to avoid impact on individual areas of popular visual amenity and individual property owners.
“Most of the areas with specific planting were to soften the visual impact of unplanted open space areas and bare roadside verges in locations that would enhance the look and feel of the area but would be unlikely to offend anyone.
The destruction of these trees is a loss of $14,000 in ratepayer funds and a great disappointment to both workers and community members who have invested the time and effort to make these improvements on the island.
“It is senseless behaviour and I would encourage anyone with information or evidence that could lead to the offenders being identified, to pass that information to the police,” Mr Lyon said.
Offenders could be fined and forced to pay the full costs of remediation.
“As North Stradbroke Island becomes increasingly recognised for its enormous natural beauty and sustainable tourism features, it is essential that everyone joins with us in caring for Straddle and helping to prevent this negative and damaging behaviour.”
Council will now review its options for increased patrols and surveillance of the Point Lookout area after a similar instance of tree vandalism in the area.